Sunday, March 27, 2011

Not By Chance

It is another election season in Nigeria, and batons will change hands afterward. Many are trying to position themselves or their own to take an office, from the Local Government to the Presidency. Parties are strategizing, meetings are being held, money is being raised and spent on campaigns, and activities are gathering momentum for the final lap in this race. The point where every eligible man will cast his vote according to his conviction, whether based on information and understanding or coercion, men will vote and the winners will be declared, sworn in for another season of service. Well for me, I see it as service, though I know many aren’t aware that leadership is really about this.

One interesting part of this current period for me has been the debates. I was present at one, and I have watched a few as well. It has to some extent brought up revelations about the candidates from levels of competence to extent of preparedness in taking the office they are vying for, from temperaments to their thoughts on issue resolution. One of those debates which I am yet to watch though is the Youth Representative debate. It was interesting when I learnt about this, particularly because I knew 2 of the participants who would be representing different parties.

I wasn’t surprised about Adeolu Akinyemi because I’m a little privy to his political affiliation and commitments. However, my initial feeling on Uche Chuta was of shock. I kept saying I know this guy, I know this guy… but is he politically inclined? And then a memory flashed back as the thought stayed with me, it was a confirmation of how our yesterday has an impact on today.

Way back in our elementary days we were all pals, as we lived in the same company estate though we attended different schools. So when some of us represented our schools at different times in the regular inter-school debate on national television, it was easy to note one another. I recall Uche was one of his school's representatives at a debate.Thinking through Uche participating in this current debate, though we had lost touch since we all moved and I didn’t know what he was up to, I settled to the fact that the debate of yesterday was not by chance.

When we look at our lives now and reminisce on our yesterday, to a large extent we’ll all be able to match certain decisions we made and events that occurred then to others that have shown up in our today. For example I had had an ambition to be a fashion designer and used to make lots of sketches as a kid. This wasn’t particularly nurtured as I grew up so it went to sleep, as I took on Architecture then Human Resources but it has however re-surfaced, as couture is one of the services I offer now.

The truth is, these seeming awakenings or repetitions are also not by chance. Somehow those of the past, though they appeared to have occurred randomly, revealed our abilities or prepared us for now. They were yesterday’s seeds whose fruit we now see. The learning point however is that, we can also tie our today to our tomorrow. We can to a good extent determine or predict tomorrow’s fruit by the seed we sow now, the decisions we make now, the exposure we get, the trainings we give ourselves, the relationships we keep, the way we manage our finance and of course what we say “yes” or “no” to.

If we have an idea of what we would like for the future we need to work back from tomorrow and live today more consciously. I will….will you?

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